Flood is one of the most common hazards in the United States and other parts of the world. The effects of flood may be local to a neighborhood or community. If it casts a large impact, the whole river basin and multiple states can be affected. Each state is at risk due to this hazard.
All floods are not the same. Some floods take time to develop and at times they may take just a few days time. Flash floods may build up quickly even without any noticeable signs of rain. They have a grave wall of loud water-bearing rocks, mud, and debris carrying along. Flooding is also caused by dam breaking and causing the effects like flash floods.
You should be cautious of a flood, no matter where you live. Be especially alert, if you reside in low lying areas or near water or downstream from a dam. The small gullies, streams, culverts, creeks, streambeds can also flood.
Before the Flood
- Do not build the floodplain except you may elevate and support your home.
- Lift up the water heater, electric board, furnace if they are liable to flood.
- Install the check valves in sewer holes to put off flood water from clogging in the drains in or near your home.
- Make barriers to block off floodwater from flowing in the building.
During the Flood
- Listen to the radio or television for information.
- Turn off all the utilities when instructed to do so and also otherwise.
- Do not touch the electric equipment being wet or standing in water.
- Do not walk by the moving water because six inches of flowing water can make you fall. If you really need to walk in water, go where water is not flowing. You can take a stick to ensure the firmness of the ground in your front.
- While driving, do not go in the flooded areas. If you get caught in floodwaters, you should leave your car and if you can, take refuge to high ground.
- Be alert of streams, canyons, drainage channels, and other areas where flood is possible. These are the areas where a flood can happen suddenly without prior alert or even rain.
After a Flood
- Listen to news reports and know whether the water supply of your community is safe to drink.
- Do not face the floodwaters as it may be dirty with oil or sewage. It may even be charged electrically from the drowned power lines.
- Do not enter the areas where the floodwaters have affected. The roads can be weak and can collapse due to the weight of the car.
- Come back home only when authorities tell you to do so.
- Clean and sterilize everything that got drowned in the flood water. The mud left in the floodwater can have sewage and chemicals that can be very dangerous.